I believe in beauty. I don’t know a lot about art, but what I do, I like. I measure good art by its ability to stick, embedding itself into a part of your story and never letting go. For me, that’s usually art in the form of music. I, like you, have songs that remind me of moments in life, some I wish I could forget, others I want to always remember.
In 2007 I was 30, it was a moment in life when all things seemed to change and pick up pace. I was a dad to a beautiful daughter who changed my life. I was stupid and naïve enough to launch a new church plant, which also changed my life. I was challenged in almost every area and at almost every turn. It was then and there that I saw the beautiful gift of my wife more deeply. It was a time of really realizing how much I love her and how I don’t want to ever imagine life without her. There were times that year when the desire was to just run away with her. With all of life pressing and racing, there she was, more radiant than when I first met her fourteen years earlier, nothing on earth more prized than her. But what was I doing to let her know what a prize she was? Too little. I had made the mistake of taking her for granted, not following through, presuming her love. It was then, in the midst of chaos, that I vowed to express my love more freely and intentionally.
Enter music. That’s when I heard my first Avett Brothers song, If It’s the Beaches. I’ve been hooked on Avett ever since.
I’ve not mastered the art of loving my wife, I fail often. But hopefully I’m making progress five years later after spending thirteen of the most wonderful years of my life with her. I turn 35 on Saturday, my greatest gift is the one I enjoy everyday, love and life with my Paula Marie. And for the second year in a row I get to celebrate with my bride by listening to our favorite folk artist in concert, The Avett Brothers, whose art and beauty has helped us make more sense of each other and this crazy world. I doubt they play this particular song tonight, but somehow I hope they know how their art has stuck and brought more beauty to our lives.
If It’s the Beaches
Don’t say it’s over
Cause that’s the worst news I could hear I swear that I will
Do my best to be here just the way you like it
Even though its hard to hide
Push my feelings all aside
I will rearrange my plans and change for you
If I could go back
That’s the first thing I would do I swear that I would
Do my best to follow through
Come up with a master plan
A homerun hit, a winning stand
A guarantee and not a promise
That I’ll never let your love slip from my hands
If it’s the beaches
If it’s the beaches’ sands you want
Then you will have them
If it’s the mountains’ bending rivers
Then you will have them
If it’s the wish to run away
Then I will grant it
Take whatever what you think of
While I go gas up the truck
Pack the old love letters up
We will read them when we forget why we left here